Love echoes

By Mir
August 13, 2009

Despite our continued efforts, Super remains at large. He continues to lounge around the neighborhood, and apparently slept on our lawn last night, though he was gone when I went out this morning around 6:00.

He is taunting us.

The combination of the kids being back to school, this dog being on the loose, Otto being back to work, and the various responsibilities on my plate of late has had a less-than-healthy effect on me. I’m exhausted. I’m lucky to keep my eyes open until 10:00 each night, and the rest of the time I seem to be late for everything. Late starting dinner so that we can eat at a reasonable time. Late turning work in. Late getting lunches packed and children out the door on time.

I’m starting to get that familiar overwhelmed feeling, and it’s overshadowing everything else.

When I sat down at the computer this morning and realized that 1) I hadn’t blogged yesterday and 2) today is Thursday, my heart sank. I don’t like to go two days without posting, but I wasn’t exactly feeling the love, either, to do a Love Thursday offering. I went over to Karen’s blog for inspiration, and found her talking about beauty.

Well. I’m not feeling all that beautiful, lately, either. Hmph.

But then I remembered that last night, my mother emailed me an old picture of my grandparents.

These are my father’s parents, Rose and Sam. My mother had sent it along saying that she thought my resemblance to my Grandma Rose was uncanny, particularly considering that folks usually tell me I look like my mom (the other side of the family). I think she’s right; the resemblance is unbelievable, particularly if you compare it side-by-side to a photo of me at roughly the same angle.

I called my dad this morning to ask him more about the photo. It’s my grandparents’ wedding picture, taken in 1933. My Grandma Rose was 21, my Grandpa Sam 26. I think my grandmother looks beautiful, here—young and fresh and about 14. I of course have no memory of her ever looking anything like this. By the time I remember her, she is, in my mind’s eye, already old, gray; short and round and somewhat fuzzy, like a peach. Her wrinkled face was covered in downy hair, and when she kissed me her cheeks and chin were impossibly soft because of it. I never thought she was unattractive, but neither did I ever imagine her to once look young and pretty like this, either.

And even with the photos side by side, I don’t imagine myself as pretty, even as I have to admit my face reflects hers.

What I think of, though, when I think of my grandmother, was her standard two questions: Are you eating enough? (I was not, according to her, no matter how much I protested. I was always “too skinny,” hence the question.) And then, once the matter of nutrition had been addressed: Are you happy?

If I answered “Yes,” to the latter, she would nod and smile. “That’s all that matters, then,” she would respond, as if that settled all open issues.

Sometimes I wish that my Grandma Rose could’ve met my kids. She would’ve delighted in Monkey’s affections and had a soft spot for Chickadee’s mini-me-ness, and—I’m certain—would’ve grilled me as to whether their skinny little butts are getting enough food. And then she would ask me if they were happy, and if I am happy, and I would tell her I think that we are, and she would smile and remind me that that’s all that matters.

And she would be right. And beautiful.

Happy Love Thursday, everyone. Today I’m going to work on disentangling myself from the stuff that matters less, and focus on the stuff that matters more.


  1. B

    The resemblence really is uncanny! I thought that as soon as I saw the picture. Then I kept reading and realized that you saw it as well. I think it’s the eyes and the nose. You are both beautiful.

  2. Rachel

    Ditto waht B said in the first comment.
    Happy Love Thursday!

  3. Rachel

    Oops, ‘what’ not ‘waht’, I’m such a dork… sorry.

  4. natasha the exile on Mom Street

    I am amazed at how very, very much you look like her, (you’re both absolutely lovely) and I’m glad that she was there for you this morning.

    I need my Love Thursday posts almost as much as you look like your Grandma.

  5. Megan

    It is striking but… it’s not just the features, it’s the expression in the eyes. That’s a gorgeous photo and I love the hand-drawn details. Aren’t you tempted to do one of you and Otto in sepia?

    And Grandma Rose was a wise, wise woman – so long as you’re happy, and STOP now and then to realize it – that’s what really matters.

  6. ChristieNY

    Wow, you and Grandma Rose look so alike that at first glance I’d wondered if you used one of those “face in a hole” type photo editing where you pop a picture of your face into a different background! You and Rose are both very beautiful, Mir. Inside and out.

    I wish you luck disentangling the things that matter from those that don’t. It’s not easy, but it’s important. I’m going to try to take your advice and do the same… happy love Thursday! <3

  7. liz

    Pretty as a rose, Mir.
    Hang in there. I was wondering if all was well yesterday.

  8. Aimee

    Wow — you really do look so much like her! And you are beautiful, just like she was. So there!

  9. Leandra

    Wow! The resemblance is amazing! And apparently the resemblance doesn’t stop with appearance because you are a wise woman too.

    I thought for sure your Love Thursday post would be about how you would LOVE for that effin’ dog to go back where he came from! But that wouldn’t really fit in with the love thursday theme, would it? See? You are a better person than I am. ;)

  10. Marie

    Wonderful post! This is why blogging is wonderful… it helps us untie all those knots that build up while we’re not paying attention. I love your Grandma Rose’s priorities. :) (My blog’s subtitle is: “Eat Good Food. Be Kind. Follow Your Heart.” Notice the priority of the eating part.)
    Happy LT! Best of luck in simplifying things a bit.

  11. Libby

    You really do look alike! It’s the first thing I thought as soon as I saw the picture and before you even mentioned it. It really is uncanny! You are both beautiful.

  12. Jamie

    A great post for today. You do look just like your grandmother – sounds like you’re both beautiful inside and out!

    Damn Super – needs to move on and let you have some peace!

  13. Summer

    All the little dramas and annoyances aside, you are happy. That’s what I want to hear.

  14. Carrie @ Who Knew?

    First, let me say, you look nothing like how I imagined. Although, to be fair, when I first started reading your blog, I started Suburban Bliss around the same time and I guess I got y’all mixed up. I always thought you looked liked Melissa. And since you don’t usually post pictures that’s just what I’ve gone on thinking. Huh.

    Second you do look a LOT like your grandmother. I know what you mean about thinking you look like one side but then also looking like another (does that make any sense?). My daughter is 11 months (!!!) and sometimes I look at her and see my half-brother’s (on my Mom’s side) daughter. Sometimes I see my sister. My Mom swears she looks just like she did when she was a baby. And she looks a lot like her Daddy. It’s crazy but in a very cool way.

    PS Good luck with Super! I have a runner dog too (but at least he comes home occasionally!) and I have to go to court over him. Court!?! I’ve never been to court for anything.

  15. dad

    Thank you.

    Long after the rose is gone
    the memory of its’ scent
    is just as sweet

    Cogitate on that!
    Then eat something and be happy.

  16. Grace

    What a fantastic picture. I love old pictures like that. And it is easier, somehow, to see the beauty in ourselves once we see it in the people we resemble.

    I hope things calm down for you.

  17. Heidi

    So you’re telling us that someday you’ll be fuzzy like a peach?

  18. Emily

    I second Megan’s observation that the resemblance extends beyond your features to the expression in your eyes…so warm, open, full of light. This post reminds me again why reading your blog is one of the highlights of my day – it celebrates the beautiful parts of life while making sense of the not-so-beautiful. And it makes me laugh. And I LOVE your writing. And I love your kids’ personalities. So your Love Thursday post indeed finds me full of love for you and yours!

  19. Katie

    I thought it was you at first!

  20. Amelia

    ahhh…i needed to hear that. thanks :).

  21. Jessica

    I think that this is a very good post, considering everything your going through. I thought of something as I was reading your post about Super. I think that you might have yourself a dog. He knows darn well where you live. He is just testing you guys out, making sure that he is going to be safe. He comes from an abused home, so of course just like a child, he is going to come to terms his way and make sure that the love is unconditional. I hope that he will start inching his way closer to your front door, either for you to catch him and give him back, or for you to keep him, at least he knows that there are wonderful beings out there that do not hurt animals.
    Just my two cents.

  22. Heather

    I agree with the previous comments – a lot of the resemblance is the light in your eyes. You are beautiful, Mir. Usually we only see the inside pretty on your blog here, so thanks for gracing us with a picture ;)
    Be happy. <3

  23. JennyM

    I thought it was you at first, too!

    Happy Love Thursday…. now I think I’ll go eat something.

  24. Lucinda

    I wondered if you had photoshopped yourself into that picture. The resemblance is uncanny! Glad you are finding your perspective. Sometimes the world can certainly overwhelm us and make us forget what really matters. Take care. Beautiful post.

  25. radioactivetori

    1. I am thinking thoughts of strength for you to get through this and remain sane. I’m sorry you are dealing with so much and that it is stressing you out.

    2. She is beautiful and does look so much like you that when I first saw the picture (before I read) I wondered who you were with in the picture.

    It’s funny that she asked if you were happy. That was something my grandma asked me every time too. She is one of the few people that would ask that and actually care if the answer was yes.

  26. Otto

    It’s comforting to know that had I been born two thirds of a century earlier, I still would have had a chance to see your smile and hear your wisdom.


  27. sassymonkey

    I was going to jump in and tell you how fantastic the resemblance is but Otto pretty much knocked me speechless.

  28. The Other Leanne

    Whatever I was thinking, I lost when I read Otto’s comment.
    Both of you are beautiful, inside and out!

  29. Tracy Blalock

    Now, I’m missing my Memaw and Papaw. Happy Love Thursday. Oh and Mir, please, please untangle yourself. =)

  30. MomCat


  31. Kemi

    Mir, your post made me misty. Thanks a lot, Otto, for making me cry.


    Beautiful! The pictures, the sentiments, the comments… It is most definitely Love Thursday.

  32. StephLove

    She was beautiful and you look just like her.

  33. Nina

    you very much look like your grandmother….nice

  34. Melinda

    Lovely Mir, both the photos and the sentiment. Isn’t it awesome how things like this find us when we need it most? I too find Karen’s blog a great place for inspiration. And I find your’s to be a great place for insight and nice thoughts and humor. Thanks so much for sharing. Happy Love Thursday!

  35. Melissa

    Aww, I was holding it together until I got to Otto’s comment. Happy Love Thursday!

  36. Nicki

    Glad to know I can still count on you for inspiration on Love Thursdays.

    As my grandmother would say when I began to feel overwhelmed, this too shall pass.

    Much happiness and love!

  37. Stacia

    You do look like her and you’re both beautiful. I have my grandparents’ wedding photo and it looks very similar. Thank you for reminding me of the love my grandparents had for each other.

  38. Beth R

    Ditto everybody else above, with a side order of big hugs for you!

    Take a few moments today to dangle your toes in your pool and enjoy the plants you’ve been tending and that have been feeding you. I know you’re feeling overwhelmed right now (move over and make room, girl!), but give yourself that 15-30 minutes to enjoy those little things and then head back into the fray.


  39. GrandeMocha

    Your post made me teary eyed & then I lost it at Otto’s comment.

  40. Miriam

    Amazing! I thought it looked just like you as soon as I saw it! How great to have such strong family ties. Things will be more “normal” soon, if there is such a thing! Hang in there!

  41. Jan

    The resemblance is unbelievable.

    I love reading your blog and appreciate your honesty about life’s struggles and the way you have with words. In fact yesterday I was having a bad day and came here looking for a good laugh. I was disappointed to not find an entry but was reminded that I am not the only one who might be having a bad day.

    Also, I love your dad and would like to adopt him. :)

  42. Nadia

    Excellent post…thank you for the reminder.

  43. Mom

    I should have known when I sent you that photo, that you would make something even more beautiful out of it. I’m sure that Grandma Rose thoroughly enjoyed your blog today.

    As for Dad’s and Otto’s comments – more beauty is always welcome.

    You are wise to realize that you need to stop and smell the roses. Now do it. or Grandma and I will not be happy. And you know how she felt about the importance of being happy.

  44. mamalang

    First, I saw the picture and thought it was beautiful. Then I finished reading and had a tear.

    Then I read your, dad, mom, and Otto’s comments, and needed a tissue.

  45. Mara

    You do look a lot like her. I hope that you can pull yourself back from that feeling of overwhelm soon.

  46. Jen

    good lord your family makes me jealous. Whatever else happens, you guys are VERY lucky in the love you have for one another. And the eloquence with which you express it. Would you mind terribly if I send my husband to take lessons with Dad and Otto for a while?

  47. Katie in MA

    That is a BEAUTIFUL photo, Mir. Thank you for sharing your Grandma Rose with us…she seems as lovely a person as you are. :)

    We’re all harder on ourselves than we should be. We think you’re beautiful inside and out. So do the kids. So does Otto. That’s all that matters. That, and being happy.

  48. Karen

    OMG Mir, crazy how much you look like your grandmother..who was beautiful…and I bet happy, and probably just as frazzled as you on occasion. Happens to all of’s how you roll with it, and I think you roll pretty well in the end. Not referring to any… just getting past obstacles kinda stuff. As for Super, I’m laughing just alittle at the antics…sorry :-)

  49. mythoughtsonthat

    This was beautiful.

    And, oh, that familiar overwhelmed feeling is rough.


  50. Marla

    What a wonderful post you have today……and I love that picture of you and your Grandma Rose and the fact that you favor her so much is uncanny. I just love the comments your Dad, Mom and Otto made….you are truly blessed to have such a warm, loving family(even if the dog won’t stay around long.) I hope your day is better and that things will improve tomorrow morning when you wake up.

  51. MamaChristy

    The twinkle in your eyes and the warm and open smiles – that’s what makes you both so pretty.

  52. Pamela L

    You do look alot like her – I thought it was you at first. AND, you are both very beautiful!! Happy Love Thursday!!

  53. Sharri

    I agree with what everyone has said about the resemblance, but will add that this is exactly how I picture Chickadee. (but with longer, straighter hair)

  54. jess

    I know everyone else is saying this, but you look so much like her! My first thought was, Wow, she looks just like Mir! I know that it’s really the other way around, but it’s so amazing when we can look back in our family tree and see ourselves (I look just like an aunt of mine, and my niece looks exactly like me.)

    Even when stressed, you can be a happy person, and I think your grandmother would be happy to know that you’re generally in good health and good spirits.


  55. Heathir

    “It’s comforting to know that had I been born two thirds of a century earlier, I still would have had a chance to see your smile and hear your wisdom.


    This, this made me cry.

  56. Nancy

    It’s not your imagination, and you are indeed beautiful.

  57. Brigitte

    That dang Otto . . (sniffle)!

    I hope you get doggie closure SOON. And an in-between period before you dare to try again.

  58. Randi

    Okay, I’m sure you’ve heard this dozens of times already, but even before you put the comparison up I could see the resemblance! Isn’t it comforting to know how strong genes are? Just think, your grandchildren, or great-grandchildren, could come out looking just like you and your grandmother!

  59. Paula

    Beeeauutifull! Both of you.

  60. pharmgirl

    Seriously? You don’t see yourself as pretty?

    Look again.

  61. Dawn

    It’s definitely not your imagination. And the pretty is clearly a family trait.

    You may not see the pretty, but the lovely people of the internets DO!

  62. Andrea

    First of all, I was not teary until I read your dad’s comments. Love Thursday comes from all places in your family it seems.

    And, how wonderful you got to see this picture of your grandmother to see the comparisons. I think you’re both very pretty. I can only imagine your grandmother was the same (apples never fall far from the tree) but you not only have a beautiful face but you’ve got love in your heart that expands your beauty. You’re blessed.

    Give your dad a kiss on the cheek from a complete stanger, me, next time you see him. I like his style.

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